Drone footage of Elon Musk's $5 million solar power battery-producing 'gigafactory' emerged on YouTube this week, revealing its fast expansion across the desert.

The 980 acre plant, based in Nevada, is Tesla CEO Musk's second factory. His line of super-smart luxury cars is produced in California. 

© Youtube user Black66
© Youtube user Black66

The battery project is part of Musk's plans to bring the cost of renewable energy-powered driving down. Scheduled to be complete by 2020, the new factory will produce 500,000 lithium-ion battery packs a year, to be used in Tesla cars.

A $35,000 solar battery-powered car could be on the market in 2017, Musk said. The cut in price - Tesla's Model S starts at about double this - is thanks to the factory's research and development in low cost batteries. 

The plant will create 6,500 jobs, the company has previously said.


The YouTube footage of a DJI drone flying over Musk's new factory was uploaded to the site on Tuesday. The account holder, Black66, has been keeping tabs on the construction site, which has been taking shape rapidly since May. 

Musk has made comments about similar drone footage uploaded four months ago. When a drone stumbled upon a part of the factory in its early stages, and posted it online, Musk quickly tweeted: 

While it may not reveal the entire factory, the progress within four months is impressive. 

Musk is not only CEO of Tesla but chairman of SolarCity, a solar panel company. He also squeezes in time to head up his own aerospace company, SpaceX. The rocket company suffered a catastrophic crash in June, but has travelled to the international space station on several occasions and still has a landing on planet Mars in its sights.

Drone manufacturer DJI allows users to upload drone footage to YouTube. 

The firm is a favourite amongst consumers, with some famous names and film production companies using DJI's Phantom 2 in film production.

It was a DJI drone that famously crashed into the White House last year. In response, DJI said it would provide geo-fencing in out-of-bounds areas like airports to avoid any crashes.

See the top uses of drones in UK businesses.